(11) North Carolina (2-0) at Long Beach State (1-1)|
Friday, November 16, 11 p.m. (et)
The Sports Network
By Scott Haynes, College Basketball Senior Editor
FACTS & STATS: Site: Walter Pyramid (6,054) -- Long Beach, California.
Television: ESPNU. Home Record: UNC 2-0, Long Beach St. 1-0. Away Record: UNC
0-0, Long Beach St. 0-1. Neutral Record: UNC 0-0, Long Beach St. 0-0.
Conference Record: UNC 0-0, Long Beach St. 0-0. Series Record: North Carolina
GAME NOTES: The 11th-ranked North Carolina Tar Heels leave Chapel Hill for an
extended five-game road trip starting with a showdown with the Long Beach
State 49ers at the Walter Pyramid.
Roy Williams may have a new cast of characters to work with this season, but
the early returns are in and North Carolina certainly looks like a team to be
reckoned with. UNC opened its season with a 76-59 win over Gardner-Webb and
then played host to the Florida Atlantic Owls in regional action of the Maui
Invitational, posting an 80-56 rout last weekend. Following this game, North
Carolina will head to Hawaii to conclude play in the Maui Invitational, prior
to a showdown with top-ranked Indiana in Bloomington.
The 49ers are a powerhouse in the Big West Conference and one of the favorites
to win the league title this season. Long Beach State opened the 2012-13
season with a 75-65 win over North Alabama, followed by a 62-44 loss at USC.
This is the third time these two teams have met on the hardwood. North
Carolina has won both previous matchups, including a thrilling 96-91 shootout
in Chapel Hill two years ago.
The season is only two games in, but it is clear that the North Carolina
offense is going to run through James Michael McAdoo. The sophomore forward
has recorded two double-doubles to kick-start his season, including 19 points
and 11 rebounds in the win over Florida Atlantic. The Tar Heels got off to a
slow start against the Owls, but turned it on in the second half, converting
54.5 percent from the floor to run away with the game. Joining McAdoo in
double figures were sophomore Desmond Hubert (16 pts) and freshmen Brice
Johnson (12 pts) and Joel James (11 pts). McAdoo has been a beast through two
games at 22.5 points and 12.5 rebounds per outing. Junior Reggie Bullock adds
10.5 points and 6.0 rebounds to the cause, while three others - Johnson (9.0
ppg), Dexter Strickland (8.5 ppg) and James (8.5 ppg) have produced early on
The 49ers received 17 points from sophomore Mike Caffey and 13 points from
senior James Ennis, but it wasn't enough in a lopsided loss at USC this week.
LBSU was able to keep things relatively close in the first half, but struggled
in the second half, converting just 5-of-23 shots from the floor (.217) en
route to the setback. The 49ers have had a tough time generating offense
through the first week of the season, netting just 59.5 points per game on
.382 shooting. Ennis has been the top performer, scoring 16.0 points per game.
Caffey has scored 13 points in each contest, but there has been little in
terms of scoring from the rest of the roster.
The 49ers lack the personnel to win this one. McAdoo has been outstanding in
the early going and that isn't likely to change anytime soon.
Sports Network Predicted Outcome: North Carolina 83, Long Beach State 47
11/16 10:44:38 ET